Kylie Hilder wins Country player of the match award

Kylie Hilder attempts to break a tackle during the clash against City earlier this season.
Kylie Hilder attempts to break a tackle during the clash against City earlier this season.

KYLIE Hilder pushed for women’s award to be added to the Country Rugby League presentation night held in Sydney.

However, she didn’t think she’d win it.

Hilder, from Forster, is the CRL women’s participation officer and is in charge of ensuring women’s rugby league grows in the country. She made a comeback to league this year playing for North Newcastle in the NSW women’s competition and represented Country in the inaugural clash against City at North Sydney Oval. City won 20-8, with Hildler playing hooker.

“The CRL invited all the Country (women) players to the presentation night,’’ Hilder explained.

“I said that was good, but there should also be some sort of award in recognition.’’

The CRL hierarchy decided to name a player of the match. However, Hilder had no part in the selection process.

“I didn’t organise an award to win it myself,’’ she laughed.

Hilder was named the Country player of the match. It was chosen by the NSW coaching staff of Glen Cross and Jamie Feeney, with input from the Country coach, Mick Young. It’s believed Hilder was the unanimous choice.

Hildler was later named in the NSW train-on squad, but didn’t play against Queensland. North Newcastle eventually made the grand final where they were beaten by a slick Redfern All Blacks side.

Hilder played the entire 80 minutes of what she said was a demanding grand final.

“I was pretty battered by fulltime,’’ she said.

While she enjoyed the season, Hilder isn’t sure what will happen in 2018.

“I just don’t think I’ll have time (to play) because of my job,’’ she said.

“It’s been an unbelievable year – playing for the Knights (in an exhibition nines game), making the Country side and winning the award and playing in a grand final, but I’m not sure about next season.’’